• Date: 18 April 2017
  • Time: Tuesday, 6pm
  • Cost: Free

Canadian curator and writer on photography, William A Ewing draws on several recent photography exhibitions to talk about how the curator moves from a ‘Platonic’ ideal (the ‘perfect’ exhibition) to the messy reality of compromises.

William A Ewing was Director of Exhibitions at the International Center of Photography, New York, and between 1996 and 2010, Director of the Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne. Since 2010, he has worked as a curator for two foundations: the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography, Minneapolis and Lausanne; and the Fondation Carène, Switzerland. He is also currently Director of Curatorial Projects for Thames & Hudson, London.

Ewing’s exhibitions have been shown at many major museums in America, Europe and Asia, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; the Hayward Gallery, the Barbican Art Gallery, Somerset House and the Serpentine Gallery, London; the Kunsthaus Zürich; the Folkwang Museum, Essen; the National Museum Reina Sofia, Madrid; the Art Gallery of Ontario; and the Setagaya Museum, Tokyo.  

Ewing’s books include many monographs and thematic books, including The Body; The Face, and most recently, Landmark: The Fields of Landscape Photography and Edward Burtynsky: Essential Elements.  Since 2010, Ewing has been an Officer in the French Order of Arts and Letters. In 2016, he was given the Royal Photographic Society Award for Outstanding Service to Photography. He lives in Lausanne, Switzerland, and works between there and London.

  • Date: 26 April 2017
  • Time: Wednesday, 10.30am
  • Cost: Free

Join us for a mid-morning tour of Colin McCahon: On Going Out with the Tide in a baby-friendly environment for engaging with art. Gallery Babes is best suited to babies aged 0–12 months.

Bookings essential.


  • Date: 4 May 2017
  • Time: Thursday, 5-10pm
  • Cost: Koha

Art, music, film, talks, beer, wine, food. This is the first chance to explore our new exhibitions after hours.

5pm New exhibitions open: Colin McCahon: On Going Out with the Tide, Petra Cortright: Running Neo Geo Games Under MAME, Martino Gamper: 100 Chairs in 100 Days | All Galleries

59.30pm Delicious treats from House of Dumplings, and cash bar serving Tuatara beer, Seresin wine, Six Barrel Soda and Mela juice | Downstairs 

510pm DJ B.Lo plays live | Downstairs 

57pm / 910pm Shannon Te Ao: (Untitled) McCahon House Studies | Auditorium 

6pm Exhibition tour of Colin McCahon: On Going Out with the Tide | Downstairs

7.30pm Talk: CHASING THE LOUNGE: Eames, power and padding: Frank Stark | Auditorium
Director of Whanganui Regional Museum Frank Stark shows and discusses excerpts from Charles and Ray Eames’ short films focussing on furniture and chair design, and talks about chairs in popular culture.

  • Date: 3 June - 13 August 2017
  • Time: Saturdays and Sundays, 12.15pm
  • Cost: Free

Get more out of your visit to the Gallery with a 40-minute introduction to the exhibitions.

Meet in main foyer. 

City Gallery Wellington presents the first New Zealand exhibition from Los Angeles-based artist Petra Cortright. Opening 8 April, RUNNING NEO-GEO GAMES UNDER MAME features a suite of digital paintings on linen and paper, screen-based video paintings, YouTube-hosted webcam videos and a series of Flash animations which apply the aesthetics of the desktop screensaver to the gallery wall.

Cortright rose to prominence in the mid-2000s with a series of webcam videos she posted to YouTube, layering the webcam software’s filters and default live effects. These videos have been hailed as key early proponents of ‘post-internet art’ and have evolved into an ongoing collaboration with fashion designer Stella McCartney.

In her new digital paintings, Cortright uses Adobe Photoshop to manipulate internet-sourced forms and imagery lifted from sites like Pinterest and Google Images. This material is transformed into layered painterly compositions that revisit traditional forms like landscape, still life or abstraction. This process has even seen Cortright called ‘the Monet of the 21st century.’

Curator Aaron Lister says, “Cortright’s painting is of and for the contemporary moment. This exhibition will shake or reaffirm people’s perception of what painting is or can be—her practice is redefining the role and possibilities for art in the digital age.”

“While challenging the idea of what painting can be, Cortright doesn’t have an antagonistic response to what’s gone before—she loves the language and romance of painting, she believes in beauty, but approaches it all through internet-based processes of making and presentation. She gives painting and the nature of aesthetic experience a system upgrade,” says Lister. 

Petra Cortright: RUNNING NEO-GEO GAMES UNDER MAME is a partnership with Tristian Koenig Gallery, Melbourne.

About the artist: Petra Cortright’s core practice is the creation and distribution of digital files, whether they be videos, GIFs, or JPEGs, using consumer or corporate software and platforms. Cortright lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. She studied Fine Arts at Parsons School of Design, The New School, New York, NY (2008) and the California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA (2004). Selected exhibitions include: "Electronic Superhighway,” Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK (2016); The Metabolic Age, MALBA, Buenos Aires, Argentina; "On YouTube. Kunst und Playlists aus 10 Jahren,“ Kunsthaus Langenthal, Switzerland; "Im Inneren der Stadt," Künstlerhaus Bremen, Germany; 1301PE, Los Angeles (solo, 2017); Carl Kostyál, London, UK (solo, 2016); Depart Foundation, Los Angeles, CA (solo); Foxy Production, New York, NY (solo) (both 2015); Société, Berlin, Germany (solo); (2014 and 2016); Frieze Film, Frieze London, UK; 12th Bienniale de Lyon, France (both 2013); and Preteen Gallery, Mexico DF (solo) (2011).


8 April – 13 August 2017, Free entry

For all media enquiries, please contact Olivia Lacey, olivial@experiencewellington.org.nz, 021 022 40312

Image: Petra Cortright nude drawing model in Eisenhower bibliography spine 2016. Courtesy Tristian Koenig, Melbourne. 

  • Date: 18 March 2017
  • Time: 6.00pm - 7.00pm (doors open 5.30pm)
  • Cost: $8

Start your Saturday evening off with performances from Wellington bands The Photogenics and Fantasing.

The Photogenics—Chrissie Butler (drums, vocals), Caroline McQuarrie (drums, vocals) and Bryce Galloway (keys, vocals)—are band #7 in a project called 'Four Songs, Played Twice' in which Galloway set out to start a new band every month, for a year. This will be their first and last performance. Don't miss it. 

Fantasing is an Aotearoa New Zealand-based art collaboration. Combining the cosmic fantasies of Bek Coogan, Claire Harris, Sarah Jane Parton and Gemma Syme, Fantasing is an 'internet potato' cultivated from the history of feminist artist collectives, and their practice spans music, video works, sculpture, writing and Instagram. 

These performances are the closing acts in City Gallery and Massey University's Cindy Sherman Symposium.  Join us for these evening performances from 5.30pm ($8), or come for the whole day from 10.30am and hear artists, curators, academics, and cultural commentators look at Cindy Sherman's enduring effect on photography and art ($40/$20). 

Cash bar. 

BOOK NOW for The Photogenics and Fantasing (or pay at the door)  $8

BOOK NOW for Cindy Sherman: A Symposium (includes entry to performances) $40/$20

  • Date: 8 April 2017
  • Time: Saturday, 11am
  • Cost: Free

On the opening day of our new suite of exhibitions: 

11am: Wystan Curnow talks with co-curator Robert Leonard about Colin McCahon: On Going Out with the Tide
11.45am: Artist Petra Cortright and exhibition curator Aaron Lister talk about RUNNING NEO-GEO GAMES UNDER MAME
12.30pm: Furniture designer Martino Gamper and Auckland-based interior designer Katie Lockhart talk about 100 Chairs in 100 Days

  • Date: 19 March 2017
  • Time: Sunday,11am
  • Cost: Free with exhibition entry

On the final day of Cindy Sherman, join curator Ellie Buttrose (QAGOMA) for a tour of the exhibition. 

  • Date: 13 March 2017
  • Time: Monday, 6pm
  • Cost: Free

At a time of national debate over housing and the growth of our cities, Wellington historian Ben Schrader reveals how our urban origins have shaped the people we are today and invites us to consider such questions as: what did cities look like and how did they change; why were women especially drawn to live in cities; in what ways did Māori experience and shape cities; how far was the street a living room and stage for city life; and why did New Zealand so quickly become a nation of townspeople?

City Talks is an ongoing series initiated by the New Zealand Institute of Architects Wellington Branch and presented in partnership with City Gallery Wellington. Its purpose is to foster discussion about architecture for a broader audience in a city that cares to openly discuss ideas relevant to our future.

  • Date: 5 March 2017
  • Time: Sunday, 2pm
  • Cost: Free with exhibition entry

Join this 40-minute exhibition tour offered in association with Wellington Pride Festival 2017 and explore Cindy Sherman's representation of gender roles and identity construction.

The tour will also include Other People's Photographs, which draws from Cindy Sherman's personal collection of found photographs, albums and scrapbooks. This intimate and fascinating exhibition includes over 200 photographs taken by and for guests to Casa Susanna, a 1960s upstate New York retreat for cross-dressing men. The men's use of photography to perform femininity brushes up against Sherman's later photographic explorations.  

In association with: